Cheapest cruise holiday ever? Sail the Med for just £38

Late-summer travellers can experience a bargain mini cruise for less than £40 per person

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Salut Marseille!

Bargain hunters in search of a cheap cruise holiday can enjoy the best of the Mediterranean on an end-of-summer cruise for as little as £38 per person - yes, really!

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CruiseDeals.co.uk is offering the one-night cruise from France to Italy aboard MSC Cruises' MSC Preziosa this October. The cruise departs Marseille and arrives in Genoa, allowing you to take in two beautiful ports and often-overlooked European cities.

While there are no flights from the UK included in the 31 October 2017 cruise, dinner on the departure night and breakfast the next morning are part of the deal. As Marseille and Genoa are on the low-cost airline routes, flights from London to Marseille are available for as little as £20 one-way (Ryanair) at the end of October and £24 one-way (Ryanair) from Genoa to London in early November.

Villa Durazzo Pallavicini

The cruise is ideal for exploring both cities and provides the perfect opportunity to spend more time on land. For instance, you could fly to Marseille and spend a long weekend in the French city, even venturing to Aix-en-Provence for a day trip by train, before cruising to Genoa. You could then spend a couple of nights discovering all that the underrated city has to offer. One of the must-visit attractions in Genoa is the 19th-century Villa Durazzo Pallavicini, which has just been named the most beautiful park in Italy.

Cruisers on a budget can also book a mini overnight holiday from Spain (Valencia) to France (Marseille) aboard MSC Cruises' MSC Splendida for £57 per person, spend three nights in Ireland on Cruise and Maritime's MS Marco Polo from £152 per person or sail to Western Europe over two nights on P&O Cruises' Aurora from £218 per person.

Online travel agent CruiseDeals.co.uk says that mini holidays are becoming all the more popular with UK travellers and the cruise industry is the latest to offer more unconventional holiday options at strikingly low prices.

"For new cruisers or those who simply want to save some cash, these shorter, more affordable journeys provide an increasingly viable option for anyone wanting to get away from it all a couple of times a year without burning a hole in their pocket," says the company's representative, Ian Crawford.

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